ESSAY WRITING Tips and Tricks
Title • When you are finished writing your essay you should give it a 2 part title. 1) Something catchy 2) A specific explanation Nature or Nurture? An analysis of the themes of good and evil in William Golding’s Lord of the Flies
Introduction: Topic • General (hook) • Specific (thesis) • Subtopics (blueprint) • (don’t forget to include the Title and Author’s Name in your introduction)
The Hook:Motivating the reader • First sentence of your essay. • An interesting fact or statistic • A personal anecdote • A question • A quotation
SHOULD Be an assertion not just a fact. (CLAIM + REASON so should include because, or due to) Pass judgment. Pass the ‘so what’ test. Be specific and express ONE idea. Reappear within every body paragraph. (Like a chorus!) SHOULD NOT Include the word ‘I’. Include vague verbs: seems, appears, think, believe. Include abstract attributes: good, bad, important. Include abstract qualifiers: maybe, perhaps. Thesis
Thesis – How to . . . • If topic is assigned as a question: • Answer the question! Be sure to use the same vocabulary. • If topic is assigned generally or is not assigned: • Brainstorm / Freewrite • Narrow down a main idea • Pass judgment on that idea
Blueprint • The blueprint should consist of one or two sentences outlining the major points to come. • If possible, attempt to justify the order of your points from the beginning. • Avoid terms such as: in this essay, the following paragraphs, etc. Don’t draw attention to yourself!
Transitions: Flow between ideas • Transitions are words which define the connections between your ideas. • Sequence: firstly, secondly, finally • Comparison: however, in contrast,on the other hand • Demonstration: for example, for instance • Addition: also, furthermore, in addition • Consequence: therefore, hence
SECs: Flow within ideas • Statement (what is your exact point) • Example (demonstrate your point) • Commentary (explain how your example proves your point)
Quotations (1) • Short quotations (less than 4 lines) are integrated directly into the text and are only separated by quotation marks. • We are left to wonder whether or not the boys knew they were killing a human. After all, the narrator claims to have heard the beast “crying out against the abominable noise” (168).
Quotations (2) • For longer quotations (longer than 4 lines), separate them from the text by indenting and single spacing the quotation. No quotation marks are needed. • Roger’s degeneration is noted by the repetition of the original stonethrowing incident when he • took up a small stone and flung it between the twins, aiming to miss. They started and Sam only just kept his footing. Some source of power began to pulse in Roger’s body (194).
Conclusion: Most important TIP • Say what you are going to say. • Say it. • Say what you said.
Tips and Hints • Did you separate all contractions? • Did you find synonyms for all taboo words? (book, good, bad, thing) • Did you write in the present tense?